President

Thy B. Bui is a litigation associate at LTL Attorneys in the firm’s Los Angeles office. She represents employers and other entities in state and federal court. She has experience defending employment and complex business disputes, class actions, and fraud and unfair competition claims. Thy earned her B.A. from the University of California, Riverside, her J.D. from the University of Southern California, and her LL.M. from the London School of Economics and Political Science. In addition to her work with OCAABA, she also serves as a Director for the Planned Parenthood Community Action Fund of Orange and San Bernardino Counties and as a co-chair for the NAPABA Young Lawyers Network and the NAPABA Labor and Employment Committee.


President-Elect

Jeannie Kim has represented debtors, creditors, trustees, asset purchasers, and official committees of unsecured creditors in complex business bankruptcy cases. Currently, Jeannie serves as judicial law clerk to the Hon. Alan Jaroslovsky, United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Northern District of California. From 2013 to 2015, she was included in the Southern California Rising Stars list for Business Bankruptcy.  She also is active in the restructuring community and volunteers with the International Women’s Insolvency and Restructuring Confederation and the Turnaround Management Association.  Jeannie is a graduate of Loyola Law School (J.D.), the University of St. Andrews (P. Dip.), and the University of California, Los Angeles (B.A.).

Jeannie has been actively involved with NAPABA and its southern California affiliates since 2008:  she is completing her third year as a Co-Chair for the NAPABA Bankruptcy, Restructuring and Creditors’/Debtors’ Rights Committee and previously was a NAPABA Representative to the Collaborative Bar Leadership Academy and its Alumni Committee.

 


Treasurer

Denise Crawford is a Deputy Public Defender IV trial lawyer with the Orange County Public Defender's Office. During her career, she has handled all manner of criminal matters from simple misdemeanors to complex felony cases. As a senior lawyer in the office, she mentors younger deputies and conducts hiring interviews. She began her career under the expert tutelage of preeminent trial lawyer Jennifer L. Keller. When she transitioned to the Orange County Public Defender's Office, not only did she handle criminal matters, she was assigned to Mental Health, LPS, Probate, SVP, Guardianship and Juvenile units gaining extensive experience in niche areas of practice. By far, however, Ms. Crawford is most at home in front of her juries. She travels to conduct trainings on trial practice both domestically and abroad with international partnerships. Most recently, Ms. Crawford provided trial training to the Public Defender's Office equivalent in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. She also writes and publishes on the topic of trial practice. To read about her cases in the media - just google her!  She was elected to the Board of Directors of OCAABA in 2013 and is a co-chair of the Judicial Evaluation Committee. She loves a good fight (in court) and in her spare time is an avid Scuba Diver, sport motorcycle rider, political news junkie and pug dog lover.

 


Secretary

Angela J. Yu is an employment attorney at Kading Briggs LLP. Prior to joining Kading Brings, she was counsel in the Orange County office of Crowell & Moring LLP, where she was a member of the firm’s antitrust group. Ms. Yu’s current practice focuses on wage-and-hour class actions, as well as single-plaintiff actions alleging discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims. Ms. Yu graduated with honors from the University of California, Berkeley, with a Bachelor degree in Molecular and Cell Biology and a minor in Latin. She earned her law degree from the University of Southern California, where she served as senior editor of the Southern California Review of Law and Social Justice. Ms. Yu currently serves on the Board of Directors of OCAABA and is Co-Chair of OCAABA’s Community Service Committee. She is also Immediate Past Co-Chair of the Orange County Coalition for Diversity in the Law.


Immediate Past President

Ivy A. Wang joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California in 2005. As an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Santa Ana Branch Office, Ms. Wang has prosecuted a wide range of criminal matters including white collar crime, RICO, violent crime, narcotics trafficking, and identity theft. Ms. Wang was awarded the 2010 Executive Office for United States Attorneys (EOUSA) Director’s Award for obtaining the first trial conviction in the nation under 18 U.S.C. § 1831, economic espionage on behalf of a foreign government, in United States v. Dongfan Chung. Ms. Wang received her undergraduate degree from Harvard College and her law degree from Yale Law School. After graduation, Ms. Wang served as a law clerk to the Honorable William A. Fletcher on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and worked as an associate at Keker & Van Nest LLP in San Francisco.


Board of Directors

John Fujii is a current Director of OCAABA, a member of the Orange County Bar Association’s Community Outreach Committee, and a partner at Silver & Wright LLP. He previously worked as a Senior Deputy City Attorney for the City of Huntington Beach. Mr. Fujii earned his undergraduate degree in Animal Physiology from the University of California, Davis, and his law degree from the University of California, Berkeley, where he was the Co-Chair of the U.S.-Japan Legal Studies Institute and an Admissions Committee Member for the Asian American Law Student Association. After graduating from Boalt Hall, Mr. Fujii worked as an associate in the San Francisco office of Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison and the Century City office of Jeffer, Mangels, Butler & Mitchell. While at the City Attorney’s Office, he taught legal research and writing at Chapman Law School for several years. Mr. Fujii is married and the father of two children.

Thomas H. Kao is business litigation attorney with Keller/Anderle LLP.  His practice focuses on complex litigation in state and federal courts, including contract and business tort disputes, mergers and acquisitions, securities fraud actions, shareholder derivative suits, insurance coverage disputes and trade secret litigation. Thomas received his J.D. in 2005 from the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law. After graduation, Thomas served as a law clerk to Judge R. Gary Klausner of the United States District Court for the Central District of California. Before joining Keller/Anderle, Thomas was a litigation associate at Stradling Yocca Carlson & Rauth and Morgan Lewis, and he worked in-house for a privately-held commercial real estate company.  Thomas has served on the Board of Directors of OCAABA since 2015 and has co-chaired the Membership and Small Firm Committees.  Thomas also works with Asian Americans Advancing Justice as a member of its Executive Advisory Council.

Kandice L. Kovac is Assistant Director of Career Development at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles. She previously worked as an associate in the Orange County office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP in the firm’s Litigation Department. Ms. Kovac received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History with a minor in Business Law from the University of Southern California, where she graduated cum laude. Ms. Kovac received her J.D. from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law in 2013, where she served as a Senior Editor for the Southern California Law Review. Ms. Kovac has served on the Board of Directors of OCAABA since 2015, and has co-chaired the Pipeline and Membership Committees.

Charles Lin practices in the Private Client Service Group at Bryan Cave LLP.  He counsels high net-worth clients on tax and estate planning issues.  His areas of focus include all aspects of income, capital gains, gift, and estate tax planning, wealth and business succession planning, charitable planning, trust tax planning, and trust and probate administration. Mr. Lin graduated with his juris doctorate from Loyola Law School, where he was President of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, and received his LL.M. in taxation with honors from Georgetown University. Prior to attending law school, Mr. Lin was a middle school English teacher with the Japanese Exchange and Teaching Programme in the Warabi City school district of the Saitama prefecture of Japan, about five miles north of Tokyo.  He speaks Mandarin, Japanese, and Taiwanese at fluid conversational levels.

Serafin H. Tagarao is an associate in the Orange County office of Gordon & Rees. His practice includes defending individual and class action employment litigation on alleged claims for wage and hour violations, wrongful termination, federal and state leave laws, the Americans with Disabilities Act, Title VII and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act. Mr. Tagarao also counsels clients in all aspects of workplace compliance. During law school, he externed with the Honorable Richard Fruin of the Los Angeles Superior Court. He also became an active member of the Philippine American Bar Association (PABA) and now serves as Chair of the Media Committee and member of the Board of Governors.

Louise Truong is a labor and employment and litigation associate in the Orange County office of Buchalter. She is a member of the firm’s diversity committee, which promotes the advancement of minorities in the legal field. Ms. Truong specializes in representing employers in all aspects of labor and employment law in both single and class-action matters and counseling employers on litigation prevention and compliance with local, state, and federal employment laws and regulations. Ms. Truong received her B.A. at the University of California, Irvine, cum laude, in Literary Journalism and Criminology, Law & Society, where she was also inducted as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Ms. Truong earned her J.D. at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. While at UC Hastings, Ms. Truong externed for the now retired California Supreme Court Justice Kennard.

Anthony S. Wang focuses his practice on corporate and securities law at O’Melveny & Myers, with an emphasis on private equity, venture capital, merger and acquisition, and Asia-related media and entertainment transactions. His clients span numerous industries including telecommunications, media, software/technology, manufacturing, energy, and real estate. He also has extensive experience in dealing with US securities compliance issues, corporate governance matters, and intellectual property topics, specifically with start-up companies and venture capital and private equity investors. Prior to joining O’Melveny, Tony spent many years at the Silicon Valley and Shanghai offices of another international AmLaw 50 firm, cultivating a valuable understanding of both US and Chinese cultures.

Ryan C. Wong is an associate general counsel at UnitedHealth Group in UnitedHealthcare’s litigation, compliance, and regulatory affairs organization.  At United, Ryan manages a portfolio of litigation, as well as counsels internal clients on regulatory and compliance issues.  Prior to joining United, Ryan was a counsel at Crowell & Moring LLP.  At Crowell, Ryan specialized in complex litigation, representing Fortune 100 corporate clients as both plaintiffs and defendants in antitrust and commercial litigation.  Ryan received both his B.A. and J.D. degrees from UCLA.

Jerry Yang is an associate at Crowell & Moring LLP’s Irvine office, where he practices in the Antitrust and Litigation groups.  Jerry specializes in complex litigation, representing large corporate clients as both plaintiffs and defendants in antitrust, commercial, and insurance matters.  Jerry received his B.A. with high honors from the University of California, Berkeley, with a double major in history and American studies.  Jerry earned his J.D. from the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law, where he was a member of the Hale Moot Court Honors Program.  Jerry was actively involved in the Asian Pacific American Law Student Association, where he served as internal vice president.  Jerry also externed for the Honorable Victor H. Greenberg at the Metropolitan Courthouse of the Los Angeles Superior Court.  In his spare time, Jerry enjoys playing golf, watching the NBA, cooking (especially barbeques), and following the stock market.


Committee Chairs

Jessica B. Cha is a Certified Family Law Specialist at the Law Offices of J. Cha & Associates. She received her law degree from Syracuse University College of Law and her undergraduate degree from the University of California San Diego. Jessica is licensed to practice in California, Maryland and the District of Columbia. After living in Washington, DC and working for the federal government, Jessica returned to California in 2010 where she started her own firm to begin her career in private practice and quickly found her niche in family law. Jessica has been involved in several high profile cases including a case involving switched bodies at the Rose Hills Mortuary and a $10.2 Million jury verdict for the wrongful death of a developmentally disabled minor at a nursing home. Jessica has received numerous accolades for her work including Top Verdict 2015 (Top 23/50 in CA) and Lawyers of Distinction 2017 for Family & Divorce.

Bryan Y. Chou is an Associate Attorney at the firm of BARTHCALDERON LLP and his practice focuses on asset protection, estate planning, and business succession planning. Mr. Chou assists clients in all stages of life, from the young professional couple that is concerned about estate planning for their minor children, to the wealthy real estate investor who wants to insulate himself and his properties from lawsuits, to the successful business owner who is agonizing about how to transition his company to the next generation.

Michelle Miu is an associate attorney at Myers Berstein LLP where she focuses her practice on intellectual property and business law matters. Prior to joining the firm, Michelle was the head of the prosecution team of an IP firm and spent years focusing on domestic and international trademark prosecution and enforcement matters.  At Myers Berstein, Michelle is very hands on and works with her clients to customize their IP strategy as well as registering and enforcing their rights domestically and internationally.  Her experience with international trademark prosecution have allowed her clients to expand their brands to various markets throughout the world.  Michelle represents clients in the food and beverage, fashion, entertainment, hospitality, financial services, automotive and technology industries.

After receiving his J.D. in 1999 from USC, Fred Thiagarajah became a Deputy District Attorney.  In 2004, he left the DA’s office to start my own criminal defense law practice in Newport Beach.  I have conducted almost one hundred jury trials over the course of 17 years as an attorney, and have been selected by various organizations as one of the top criminal lawyers in Southern California, including being selected by Super Lawyers in 2012, 2013, 2016 and 2017.